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Gaskets are used on the exhaust manifold to provide an airtight seal between the exhaust manifold and the exhaust port in the cylinder head. A faulty exhaust manifold gasket can cause noxious gases and high temperatures to escape into the engine at the wrong point so it is best to replace a bad exhaust gasket as soon as possible. The first symptom of a faulty exhaust manifold gasket is a loud hissing or spitting sound coming from the engine, especially during acceleration or climbing a hill. This can happen with older vehicles, especially heavier duty trucks and heavy equipment, as rust builds up on the hardware holding down the manifold. You can continue to use your heavy equipment temporarily if there is a exhaust leak due to a faulty exhaust manifold gasket. However, not for long. Leaking exhaust gasses in your engine will start with reduced power or sputtering and end with the engine failing.